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This month our Chief Executive, Michael O'Sullivan, signed a memorandum of understanding with the French Ministry of Education. The agreement will see Cambridge Assessment International Education continue to work closely with the French government on the development of the British version of the International Option of the Baccalauréat, the OIB. At the signing ceremony in Paris, Monsieur Hervé Tilly signed the Memorandum of Understanding on behalf of the French Ministry of Education.
Cambridge began working with the French Ministry of Education in 1984. Since then we have continued to work closely with the Ministry and with our colleagues at the Association des Sections Internationales Britanniques et Anglophones (ASIBA), our Associate in France, on the development both of the examination and of a dynamic learning community of British International Sections.
Since the British version of the OIB was first created over 30 years ago, we have seen examination entries increase year on year. Over 40 British Sections in International Lycées in France and Belgium now enter candidates for the examination, with further international expansion expected in the coming years.
Cambridge is responsible for quality assurance of the British version of the OIB examinations (English language and literature, and history-geography), ensuring that standards correspond to those of Cambridge International A Levels.
Michael O’Sullivan began his speech by saying what an honour it was to be in Paris for this special occasion: "Me rendre à Paris est toujours un plaisir. Mais en cette occasion, c’est plus qu’un plaisir, c’est un honneur."
He went on to talk about the OIB. He said: "The British version of the OIB provides academic and linguistic demands to an equal level in English and French, encouraging biculturalism as well as bilingualism. It enables students to navigate two cultures and creates a bridge between the Francophone and Anglophone worlds. The result is a well-balanced academic qualification based on a stimulating, challenging curriculum for bilingual students… Those who succeed in this dual curriculum develop a capacity for hard work, and an intellectual and cultural flexibility which, at a practical level, opens up multiple options for study in both Anglophone and Francophone universities and for diverse international careers."